Norman Klassen

Norman Klassen is Associate Professor of English Language and Literature at the University of Waterloo in Waterloo, Ontario. His research specializes in the works of Geoffrey Chaucer. He is the author of Chaucer on Love, Knowledge, and Sight (1995) and The Fellowship of the Beatific Vision: Chaucer on Overcoming Tyranny and Becoming Ourselves (2016). 


Volume 136

Available for mp3 purchase
Guests on Volume 136: Thomas Albert Howard, on the history of commemorating the Reformation; Mark Noll, on how the Reformers would want to be remembered; Andrew Pettegree, on how Martin Luther transformed the printing industry; Peter Leithart, on the biblical basis for the unity of the Church; Norm Klassen, on the political theology implicit in Chaucer’s Canterbury Tales; James Litton, on the life and work of hymnologist, Erik Routley; and Joseph O’Brien, on the neglected literary achievements of J. F. Powers.


The Vocation of Knowledge: Higher Education and the Difference Christ Makes

In this Anthology, Mark Noll (The Future of Christian Learning) describes why serious Christian learning requires a confidence that the Gospel has broad social and intellectual consequences. Norman Klassen and Jens Zimmermann (The Passionate Intellect: Incarnational Humanism and the Future of University Education) explain why the term "Christian humanism" is especially apt in describing the aims of Christian higher education. James K. A. Smith (Desiring the Kingdom: Worship, Worldview, and Cultural Formation) develops the idea that education is more about formation than information, and that we are formed by our participation in liturgies, whether at church or at the mall. 78 minutes.


The Passionate Intellect: Incarnational Humanism and the Future of University Education by Norman Klassen and Jens Zimmermann

In The Passionate Intellect, Norman Klassen and Jens Zimmermann trace the history of higher education from its medieval roots to the present, focusing on how educational agendas have been assembled in light of shifting understandings of the nature of knowledge and the nature of human well-being. They demonstrate that some form of humanism has always been central to the purposes of higher education, and insist that the recovery of a rich, Christocentric Christian humanism is the only way for the University to recover a coherent purpose. Read by Ken Myers. 6.5 hours


Volume 86

Available for mp3 purchase
Guests on Volume 86: Roger Lundin on why, after Vietnam, American literary critics forgot about American religion; Lawrence Buell, on diverse visions of America and Nature; Harold K. Bush, Jr., on the glorification of the American way as a civil religion; Roger Lundin, on the transformation of the nature of belief in the late 19th century; Katherine Shaw Spaht, on radical autonomy, marriage, divorce, and law; Steven L. Nock, on how broadly shared cultural assumptions affect laws regulating marriage and divorce; Norman Klassen & Jens Zimmermann, on the Incarnation and humanism, and on how various dualisms affect our assumptions about faith, knowledge, and higher education.